WOLFF Cranes in Operation
for a New Landmark
at the Port of Rotterdam


A multi-function building complex, and with it a new district in the city center, is currently being created at the Wilhelmina pier on the river Maas, in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. The new “De Rotterdam” construction is rising up right alongside the old departure point of the historic Holland America Line, which transported thousands of emigrants to America right through to the middle of the 20th Century.

Four WOLFF luffing jib cranes have been in operation since late last year to assist with the carcassing work for this so-called “vertical city”. In early 2011, the current pack of red WOLFF cranes will be supplemented by a fifth and final luffing jib crane.

The project is part of a large-scale urban development plan for the city of Rotterdam, which calls for the construction of three 150 m tall high-rise towers that will house shops, apartments, offices and recreational facilities on up to 46 floors with a view to revitalizing the riverside precinct of this port city.

Since early 2009, this large-scale project has been managed by the Stuttgart office of the company Ed. Züblin AG in conjunction with Strabag Benelux. The project partners have placed their trust in the tried-and-proven WOLFF luffing jib crane technology to perform the construction work on this tight building site.

“We can look back on a long-standing partnership with Züblin. For this demanding project in the immediate downtown location, Züblin have chosen yet again to rely on the proven performance of the WOLFF luffing jib cranes. To ensure fast construction progress, the on-site luffing jib cranes are operating in single line fall mode. While this has halved the maximum lifting capacity of the cranes, it has enabled higher lifting speeds to be achieved,” explains Florian Rehklau, the Munich branch manager of WOLFFKRAN GmbH.

The right technology choice
Two WOLFF 355 B luffing jib cranes and two WOLFF 224 B tower cranes are currently standing on foundation anchors in the 50 m x 110 m construction pit and assisting with the steel and concrete carcassing work. The cranes have been positioned in such a manner that they can be raised, and continue to rotate their jibs alongside one another as the construction of the building progresses.

The first building phase will involve the construction of the basement and parking spaces of the multi-function building complex. A cross frame was used when installing the first WOLFF 355 B in order to provide improved support within the construction pit. “We deliver tailormade on-site crane assembly solutions to suit our customer’s requirements and the building site conditions”, says Mr. Rehklau.

No auto crane was required to assemble the two WOLFF 224 B luffing jib cranes as they were able to be assembled using the initially installed WOLFF 355 B. An additional WOLFF 224 B model luffing jib crane will be providing assistance on the construction site from early 2011 onwards. All five tower cranes with jib booms have been hired for the project and are expected to be in operation until early 2013.

Construction of a vertical city
The building name “De Rotterdam” is a reference to the maritime history of the region. The new skyscraper will be erected directly on the Maas river in the Port of Rotterdam precinct, which has been developed into a new city district during the past few decades.

According to the plan, the skyscraper will consist of a plinth building with three towers, each comprising an upper and lower building section. The plans for the “vertical city” project were conceived by the renowned Dutch architect Rem Koolhass.


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